The Four Types of COVID-19 Vaccine


Vaccines include: Sinopharm, Sinovac. Number of doses required: 2 doses, intramuscular. Other licensed vaccines that use this sort of technology: hepatitis A, polio, rabies (all inactivated type).

What to know: the entire virus vaccine uses a weakened or deactivated sort of the pathogen that causes COVID-19 to trigger protective immunity thereto .

The two vaccines mentioned above – Sinopharm and Sinovac – both use inactivated pathogens, therefore they can’t infect cells and replicate, but can trigger an immune reaction.

Benefits: consistent with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (GAVI), the benefits of an inactivated whole virus vaccine include the very fact its technology is well established, it’s suitable for people with compromised immune systems, and it’s relatively simple to manufacture.

Challenges: Booster shots could also be required.


Vaccines include: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna. Number of doses required: 2 doses, intramuscular. Other licensed vaccines that use this sort of technology: None.

What to know: Since no other existing licensed or approved vaccine uses this sort of technology, the messenger RNA (mRNA) variety might be mistaken for something completely new healthcare. However, variety of mRNA vaccines are studied within the past for illnesses and diseases including cytomegalovirus (CMV), influenza, rabies, and therefore the Zika virus.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): “Researchers are studying and dealing with mRNA vaccines for many years . Interest has grown in these vaccines because they will be developed during a laboratory using readily available materials. this suggests the method are often standardised and scaled up, making vaccine development faster than traditional methods of creating vaccines.”

So, how does it reportedly work? The COVID-19 RNA vaccine consists of mRNA molecules made during a lab that code for parts of the SARS-CoV-2 virus – specifically the virus’ spike protein. Once injected into the body, the mRNA instructs the cells to supply antigens – like the spike protein mentioned – which are then detected by immune cells, triggering a response by the body’s lymphocytes. The killer T-cells destroy the infected cells, while the B-cells and helper T-cells support antibody production. Whoever is exposed to the COVID-19 coronavirus within the future would have an system that recognises it, and successively repel the infection.

Benefits: Consistent with the University of Cambridge’s PHG Foundation, advantages include good safety (since there are not any live components, there’s no risk of the vaccine triggering disease), reliability, which it’s relatively simple to manufacture.

Challenges: Disadvantages include unintended effects (such as an unintended immune reaction), ensuring effective delivery into the body (since free RNA within the body is quickly broken down), storage issues, plus the very fact that this sort of vaccine has never previously been licensed for humans.


Vaccines include: Oxford-AstraZeneca, Sputnik V (Gamaleya Research Institute). Number of doses required: 2 doses, intramuscular. Other licensed vaccines that use this sort of technology: Ebola.

What to know: this sort of vaccine introduces a secure , modified version of the virus – referred to as “the vector” – to deliver ordering for the antigen. during a COVID-19 vaccine, the “vector” is that the spike proteins found on the surface of the coronavirus. Once the body’s cells are “infected”, the cells are instructed to supply an outsized amount of antigens, which successively trigger an immune reaction.

Benefits: Viral vector-based vaccination is another well-established technology which will trigger a robust immune reaction because it also involves both B cells and T cells.

Challenges: Previous exposure to the vector could reduce effectiveness, plus these sorts of vaccines are relatively complex to manufacture compared to others.


Vaccines include: Novavax. Number of doses required: 2 doses, intramuscular. Other licensed vaccines that use this sort of technology: hepatitis B , meningococcal disease, pneumococcal disease, shingles.

What to know: The protein subunit vaccine contains purified “pieces” of a pathogen instead of the entire pathogen to trigger an immune reaction . it’s thought that by restricting the system to the entire pathogen, the danger of side effects is minimised.

Benefits: The protein subunit vaccination is additionally a well-established technology that’s advantageous for those with compromised immune systems.

Challenges: this sort of vaccine is comparatively complex to manufacture, and adjuvants and booster shots could also be required.

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